Brothers answering the call of duty
AFTER playing paintball for more than seven years, Ben, Harry and Ian Carew knew there was something missing from the sport. Something they found all too often in video games.
The brothers are weeks away from opening their own paintball fields in Calvert, complete with inspiration from blockbuster video game franchises like Call of Duty and Battlefield. Their goal? To bring more team work in the game of paintball.
"My little brothers and I have been playing paintball for about seven to eight years now," Harry said. "Since we sort of started playing paintball, we noticed there isn't any good team play with it.
"It's always just been: rock up at the paintball fields with the money; they give you the guns and say: 'here you go, shoot each other.'
"We've always been chasing something a little bit different and we haven't really found it. So we thought, 'why don't we just make our own'?"
Harry said the growing popularity of multi-player shooter games was something people could relate to.
"We're going to base it off Call of Duty. How they use (game modes like) dominations and team death matches. We've got different fire teams. It is way more team-based than just playing by yourself. Our fields are designed around using teams to get around and using the squads.
"And what's the biggest (combat) thing people can relate to these days? It's online gaming. So, I mean we're trying to bring that to a real life experience."
Tactical Operations Paintball, located between Rosewood and Laidley, is hoping to change the game in Australia.
Ben said the brothers wanted to bring something to paintball they hadn't been able to find in Australia.
"Trying to change the concept of the game and, as our slogan says, try and revolutionise the game.
"We're building different things most fields don't do, different sort of obstacles. What we're doing is trying to use real-life scenarios here."
While they might be drawing their inspiration from Call of Duty, they aren't setting their sights on the videogame audience.
They're also hopeful of bringing in commercial customers to use the game to encourage team-building.
"Our corporates are really starting to pick up," Harry said.
"In real time, we can put them in a situation here and knuckle them down.
"We can say 'your team isn't communicating' - they're covered in paint, if they were communicating better that wouldn't happen."
The fields haven't been designed with the sole purpose of shooting your friend or workmates but for an offensive and defensive balance.
"What we've got that makes us stand out as different (from other operators) is our fields are set out for scenarios," Harry said.
"On some fields we've got big sniper towers and opposing those sniper towers are a lot of sandbags and bunkers and huge big forts with bunkers in them and fox holes, just to oppose that one spot. For every defence there's offensive (positions) as well.
"You've actually got to work as a team on our fields. If you don't work as a team on our fields, you're going to lose.
"What we're trying to do is when you've got a group of mates, you pick your leaders out, make them work.
"It's all a lot of strategic stuff, which people do every day when they're playing Battlefield or Call of Duty."
The video games inspiration doesn't stop at trying to encourage team work, with the brothers building a field specifically designed to replicate Call of Duty's tongue-in-cheek zombies mode.
While the majority of the game is based around realistic military missions, zombies is a side game where players work together to survive until a rickety bus, with windows barricaded by planks of wood, arrives to drive them to the next level.
Intriguing as bringing this into real life sounds, the Carews aren't willing to give away much - yet.
"We can't give away too much but basically, the zombies are going to have paintball markers. It's going to be pretty hard to shoot the zombies down," he said. "It is one big firefight."